TEHNS Summit

Preparation for the next TEHNS event is underway. Dates and times to be announced.

Driving results in Health, Nutrition, & Sustainability
through Technology & Education.

The TEHNS Summit

brings together industry leaders to equip, amplify, and drive impactful results in Global Health and Nutrition by utilizing Technology and Education in intentionally Sustainable ways. In conjunction with The White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health; Grow Local is hosting the TEHNS Summit to focus on Technology, Education, Health, Nutrition, & Sustainability. In Attendance will be the best and brightest minds from around the world, collaborating & innovating toward a shared mission.

The goals of the summit are to:

  • Facilitate high value connections and access to new resources.
  • Reveal novel ways to sustainably engage and educate.
  • Highlight real application of bleeding edge technology.
  • Share knowledge from innovative and provocative thought-leaders.
  • Show how public-private initiatives are materialized and driving impact.
  • Improve attendees’ abilities to achieve success and scale efforts and awareness of their progress.

2022 Speaker Alumni

Richard Seline

Resilience Innovation Hub & Collaboratory NetworkManaging Director

The ROAR PartnershipManaging Partner

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Richard has a long history of working with public and private sector executives, organizations, and governments across a number of industry sectors. For over 30 years, his career has included senior-level roles in business, economic, and technology-focused strategic development for federal and state agencies, academic research institutions, civic-led initaitives, and the private sector. Throughout his professional work, Richard has been called upon to facilitate and advise the reorganization and the formation of new business units, restructure of revenue and operations, create innovative financial and investment models. Richard has conducted 185 national and regional strategic consulting engagements and launched 22 new investment programs at the international, national and regional levels.

Currently, Richard serves as both the Co-Founder and Managing Director of the Resilience Innovation Hub and Collaboratory Network, as well as the Managing Partner of The ROAR Partnership, a national investment advisory firm connecting pre-disaster risk mitigation and resources in and adjacent to locations identified as “Most At Risk and Most In Need” (multiple occurrences of disasters in socially vulnerable, low-to-moderate income communities). In his role with the Innovation Hub, a 501c3 organized to connect technology, equipment, data science, and alternative investment for pre-disaster risk mitigation, Richard has worked with insurance senior executives, public agencies, industry and business associations, civic and community organizations, traditional and innovative investment interests, and a broad coalition to identify next-generation solutions for long-standing challenges caused by droughts and floods, spills and leaks, snow and ice, fires and explosions, pandemics and cyber security breaches.

Through the ROAR (“Resilience Opportunity Advisors + Resources”) and its “Resilience As A Service” model, Richard has brought together Fortune 500 companies, emerging-growth stage technology firms, unique financing and investment interests, and public agencies around “Regional Resilient Strategic Inventories” and “Strategic Project Development” with federal, state, county, local leaders. His immediate attention is towards launching and scaling “Community Disaster Resilience Zones” and “Smart Watershed Management & Mitigation Networks” in collaboration with private- philanthropic-public sectors.

During the George H.W. Bush Administration, Richard served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the US Department of Commerce – Economic Development Administration, Chief of Staff of the President’s Commission on Executive Exchange, Congressional Liaison to the Persian Gulf Task Force for the Environmental Protection Agency, Director of Client and Industry Relations for the US General Services Administration, and White House Liaison to the Economic Summit of Industrialized Nations (“G8 Summit”).

Post his federal service and White House appointment, Richard consulted with Arthur Andersen’s Public Sector Practice as a Senior Advisor where he was the co-lead for reorganization of several Cabinet-level and agency operations (e.g. Office of the President, the White House; Office of the Director, FBI; Office of National Aviation Communications, FAA), and the formation of the Central Intelligence Agency’s groundbreaking InQTel Investment Fund. He was co-chair and author of the National Council of Public-Private Partnership’s Transforming Federal-Private Partnerships for New Investments and Alternative Resource Allocation that led to significant changes in policies, rules, and practices in procurement reform.

Richard has managed a $400 million federal agency (US Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration), co-developed and served as lead consultant to a first-in-the Nation $160 million competition for 2 regional workforce innovation (US Department of Labor), advised senior executives of a $2 billion academic medical research and hospital (UT MD Andersen Cancer Center), consulted on reorganization of nearly $5 billion in state and local assets through unique partnership models, and launched a twelve-person consultancy with $3 million in annual revenues at its peak.

He holds a BS degree in Urban Government from the University of Texas at Austin, completed course work in Business. Management (non-degree) from the University of Houston, and participated in Harvard University’s Kennedy School Federal Executive one-week program.

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Chef Roberto Mendoza

The Chef Heaven’s Kitchen –

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Executive chef of the prestigious Beverly Hills hotel in California and Oscar awards organizer, named chef of the year by UNC Charlotte. Opened 34 universities around the country with their culinary programs. Awarded as a Hispanic Pride in Washington, DC. Named chef of the year by mint museum of Charlotte.

Chef Roberto Mendoza is internationally recognized culinary innovator, educator, television person. Humanitarian speaker. Founder of Heaven’s Kitchen, an organization that provides smart solutions to end hunger and poverty using the power of food to revive communities and strengthen economies of extreme poverty which helps different countries by feeding low-income children and bringing joy to each one of them. During emergencies he and his team work hard to supply food needs to communities .

Chef Mendoza is a tireless advocate of the homeless and supports the entire immigrant community in the United States of America. He is recognized for cooking many celebrities and personalities such Prince of Saudi Arabia, president Clinton, President Bush, President Barack Obama, Condoliza Rice, Marla Maples, Shri Shri Ravi Shankar .

Chef speaks four languages (Spanish, English, French and Hebrew). The chef’s greatest goal is to help the poorest and be an inspiring example of how generosity, self-sacrifice, and self-giving to others makes sense in modern society. The work he does is not heroic, anyone who has the grace of God can do it.

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Marvin Moncada, PhD

NC State University | Plant Food Processing – Assistant Professor

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Dr. Marvin Moncada received his BS in Food Technology and Engineering from Zamorano University, Honduras in 2005 and his MS and PhD in Food Science & Nutrition from Louisiana State University. He joined NC State University in 2020, following six years as a food scientist and plant manager at the Louisiana State University AgCenter Food Incubator.

Dr. Moncada’s research interests focus on alternative and innovative food ingredients technology from upcycling plants, fruits, vegetables and grains. His responsibilities include working with plant- based food processors to accelerate the growth of food processing and the generation of value- added products that diversify and expand the manufacturing of safe and nutritious foods in North Carolina.

He currently serves as a PI and Co-PI, and leading research activities on industrial and USDA research projects using the described technologies above. Dr. Moncada has received the Certified Food Scientist award from the International Food Science Certification Commission and the Institute of Food Technologists.

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Josip Simunovic, PhD

NC State University | Food, Bioprocessing, and Nutrition SciencesResearch Professor

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Dr. Josip Simumovic PhD has focused his work around food science and nutrition, leading industry innovations including continuous flow thermal process and the development and implementation of equipment, tools, and software that reduce waste and increase shelf life without the use of additives and preservatives.

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Matthew Pieper

Open Hand Atlanta
Executive Director

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Matt recently celebrated his thirteenth anniversary with Open Hand Atlanta, a not-for-profit that cooks, packages and delivers over 5,000 medically tailored meals a day to neighbors in need in metro-Atlanta and many surrounding Georgia counties. Open Hand also provides nutrition education and counseling for clients facing a chronic disease diagnosis.

In addition to his role as Executive Director, Matt serves as a Vice Chair of the Board of Advisors for the national Food Is Medicine Coalition, and as President for the Meals on Wheels of Georgia Board of Directors, and serves on the Board of Directors for Rotary Club of Buckhead where he has been a proud Rotarian since 2010. He is also an active member of the Atlanta Regional Collaborative for Health Improvement and speaks frequently as a public policy advocate for the role community-based nutrition interventions play in helping to achieve better health outcomes.

In 2016 and 2017, Matt was listed in The Atlanta Business Chronicle’s Top 50 Influential Nonprofit Leaders in Atlanta. Additionally, he is a member of the Georgia Council on Aging; Metropolitan Atlanta HIV Health Services Planning Council; and Matt is a member of Leadership Atlanta’s Class of 2018.

Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian

Tufts University | Friedman School of Nutrition Science and PolicySpecial Advisor to the Provost, Dean for Policy

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Dariush Mozaffarian is a cardiologist, Special Advisor to the Provost, Dean for Policy, and Jean Mayer Professor at the Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy; and Professor of Medicine at Tufts School of Medicine. Dr. Mozaffarian has stepped away from his role as Dean for the 2022-23 academic year, returning on July 1, 2023, to focus on the translation and dissemination of scientific evidence into public awareness, policy, and innovation, including to help inform the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health. His work aims to create the science and translation for a food system that is nutritious, equitable, and sustainable. Dr. Mozaffarian has authored more than 500 scientific publications on dietary priorities for obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases, and on evidence-based policy approaches and innovations to reduce diet-related diseases in the US and globally. He has served in numerous advisory roles, and his work has been featured in a wide array of media outlets. Thomson Reuters has named him as one of the World's Most Influential Scientific Minds.

Dr. Mozaffarian received a BS in biological sciences at Stanford (Phi Beta Kappa), MD at Columbia (Alpha Omega Alpha), residency training in internal medicine at Stanford, fellowship training in cardiovascular medicine at the University of Washington; an MPH from the University of Washington; and a Doctorate in Public Health from Harvard. Before being appointed as Dean at Tufts in 2014, Dr. Mozaffarian was at Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health for a decade and clinically active in cardiology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. He is married, has three children, and actively trains as a Third Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo.

The Friedman School:
As one of the top nutrition institutions in the world, the Friedman School’s mission is to produce trusted science, future leaders, and real-world impact. The Friedman School pursues research, education, and public impact across five Divisions, the Feinstein International Center, the Food & Nutrition Innovation Institute, and multiple academic programs. Areas of focus range from cell to society, including: molecular nutrition, human metabolism and clinical trials, nutrition data science, behavior change, business innovation and entrepreneurship, community and organizational interventions, communication and media, agriculture, food systems, and sustainability, hunger and food security, humanitarian crisis, and food policy and economics. Friedman School graduates are leaders in academia, US and international government, policy, advocacy, industry, public health, community service, and entrepreneurship. The School’s unique breadth, engagement with the world, and entrepreneurial spirit make it a leading institution for nutrition education, research, and public impact.

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Jason Cooner

Archetype –
President & CEO

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Jason Cooner is a world leading expert in large scale software infrastructure design and development for blockchain technology and digital exchanges and hold a unique level of expertise as there areas begin to serve as tools to regulate carbon credits and abide by standards and protocol os the Paris Agreement and Kyoto Climate Accords.

Jason’s experience incudes developing and deploying the Department of Defense’s internet protocol to drive all communications between banks globally, and creating the business model for Machine-2-Machine (M2M0 sector, today know as the IOT (Internet of Things).

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Robert Chapman

Chapman Group Foundation –

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Robert Chapman is a US-based businessman and philanthropist. Zimbabwean born, British groomed, and American taught. He is also an entrepreneur and family man whose unconventional story is both powerful and inspiring. Having lost both his parents tragically at an early age, Robert had to learn from others in his life about what it means to be a man and be successful. Upon finishing school and moving to the U.S., Robert turned his job of being a deli slicer into a career as an executive and entrepreneur. Now, Robert is on a path to give back, confront challenges, and inspire others.

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